FOODVENTURES, TASTING EVENTS

Farmer’s Market Foodventure (Cook with Jason)

Farmers Market has been my thing this year. You can search this blog and see how I’ve fallen in love with getting lost at a farmers market (alone or with someone). So I was really curious when I received an invite to try out Farmer’s Market Foodventure at Solana Beach with Chef Jason (from Cook with Jason). The concept is that you meet at a local kitchen, explore the town’s farmer’s market, tour an olive oil company, sample some wines at a winery shop, and then take some of the market’s bounty to use for a hands on cooking class where you’d be making dinner for yourself and others with the help of Chef Jason. The foodventure starts at 1:30p and ends around 6:30p so it’s a half day leisurely affair where you can take your time and enjoy yourself.

CENTER FOR A HEALTHY LIVING
CENTER FOR A HEALTHY LIFESTYLE

This cottage style establishment is behind the Boys and Girls Club of San Dieguito.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 103

There’s plenty of parking and you walk under this pretty walkway to get into the cottage.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 105

They have a front patio which was nice as the cottage is close to the beach so you can feel the ocean breeze once in a while.

HOMEMADE PUMPKIN MUFFINS
HOMEMADE PUMPKIN MUFFINS

These beautiful pumpkin streusel muffins greeted us when we walked in. They were made from scratch by Chef Jason’s wife, Kristi Roehm. I LOVE pumpkin-ANYTHING right now and have to say that these pumpkin muffins were effing amazing. They were so moist and had a rich deep pumpkin flavor. The brown sugar streusel topping with pecans was simply perfect.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 005

There was even fresh French pressed coffee ready to be served.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 013

There are 4 chairs that are right up front where you can better see the chef in action. So, me being smart and all, decided to reserve a seat before everyone got there 🙂 There’s also a fun Cook with Jason apron that’s placed on all the chairs.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 019

The center has their own outdoor garden.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 020

The garden even had golden bananas that Chef Jason said he could have used in a dessert that evening.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 023

And these baby orange tomatoes – how pretty do these orbs look.

TABLE SETTINGS
TABLE SETTINGS

I liked the quaint and thoughtful table setting that Kristi set up outside.

They even have a LIVE chicken in a coop that they let out when Chef Jason teaches a kid’s cooking class.

After the tour of the garden, we all carpooled to the Solana Beach local market to start the Farmer’s Market Foodventure.

CHEF JASON & KRISTI ROEHM
CHEF JASON & KRISTI ROEHM

Honestly, one of THE NICEST couples ever. And, they work together.

I won’t bombard this post with too many pics from the Solana Beach farmer’s market (will try to do another post about it). But here are a few things I found fun:

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 028
YELLOW EGGPLANT
FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 032
SQUASH BLOSSOMS
FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 035
HUMONGOUS TOMATOES
FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 037
CHILI FLOWER PRESENTATION
FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 045
SO MANY VARIETY OF MUSHROOMS
FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 050
GELATO SAMPLES
FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 054
HABANERO & CHIPOTLE INFUSED HONEY

This was $5 for a small jar but it was such a beautiful tasting honey. You could absolutely taste the habanero in this honey. The nice woman said this would taste amazing drizzled over cheese and crackers. Sold.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 057
TEMECULA OLIVE OIL COMPANY

Our next stop was to the Temecula Olive Oil Company. I’ve seen them at Old Town and remember the free sample of olive oil they gave me at the San Diego Restaurant Week Launch party some weeks ago.

RAW OLIVES
RAW OLIVES

Sis has olive trees and I see this exact same fruit (isn’t olive a fruit?) on her grass quite a bit.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 060
TEMECULA OLIVE OIL SAMPLE BAR

SO many samples to choose from. Eddie, the manager, was the most gracious host that day.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 065

You try the olive oil with no bread. It’s best to sip and savor the feel/taste of the olive oil on its own.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 068

He also would sample the various vinegars they produce. I believe this one was the fig vinegar?

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 069

Ok. So THIS habanero olive oil is really spicy. Even for a spicy queen like me. Chef Jason warned me not to try this because it’s going to confuse my taste buds when we head to the winery next. Of course I had to prove him wrong (along with Tara) and wellll….yeah…let’s just say the olive oil burns. I’m totally coming back to get this though.

CARRUTH CELLARS
CARRUTH CELLARS

I’ve visited Carruth many years ago when I saw a Groupon deal. It was fun to see them still here. They have a smaller indoor space that’s fully air conditioned. The place was bustling with patrons drinking cold white wine and snacking on cheese plates.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 074

Carruth Cellars reserved a table for our group and even had crackers on the table waiting for us. We sampled a variety or red and white wines.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 091

Kelsey, my new found blogger friend from Whiskey & Work, and I agreed that the Sauvignon Blanc JUICE was the best booze we had that sitting. This juice is the 1st half of the grapes being made into a sauvignon blanc so there’s about a 13% (?) ABV content to this wine. Kelsey and I both thought it tasted like a no sugar lemonade that would be AWESOME if used as a mixer with gin, tequila, vodka, etc.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 092

Zach made me a personal wine bottle. I bought two of these (filled with the sauvignon blanc juice) so I could give one to my biggest fan (yeah, that would be my mom). There’s a limited amount of this ‘juice’ so come try it out before they sell out.

Ok. Let’s move on to the cooking part of this Farmer’s Market Foodventure ~ A Tuscan Adventure ~ …

First course:

Potato, Bacon & Rosemary Pizza

Yukon Gold Potatoes, Thick-Cut Smoked Bacon, Roasted Garlic Olive Oil, Rosemary & Parmigiano-Reggiano Cheese prepared on a Baking Steel

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 120

Chef Jason had prepared freshly made dough earlier. He gave each girl their own piece of dough to knead and make their own pizza. Do you see the thin slices of potato underneath the slab pork belly pieces?

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 121

I sprinkled mine with extra parm cheese and added even more bacon to it. There’s also fresh slivers of sweet white onions in there.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 126

Chef Jason baked all the pizzas at the same time and then placed them on the kitchen counter. We all had to guess who’s pizza was who’s!

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 139

And VOILA. Chef Jason added farm fresh arugula tossed with roasted garlic olive oil from Temecula Olive Oil Company on top of the still hot pizza.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 153

He also had basil olive oil from the same company which I used to further drizzle on top of the final product. The pizza tasted delicious with the fatty pork belly and the pungent parmigiano. I would have liked the crust to  be cooked a bit more but we were on a time constraint that day.

Jason and Kristi had one of their favorite vendors, Savory Spices, at the Foodventure that day.

SAVORY SPICES
SAVORY SPICES

This nice woman educated us on the different spices their store carries and how the spices can be incorporated into dishes. She had spice samples we could smell as well.

I wandered outside again because, truth be told, I wanted to play with the chicken.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 159

I’m not sure how to communicate with a chicken so I whistled to it to try to get it’s attention for this photo.

Second course:

Pollo con le melanzane alla parmigiana (Chicken with Eggplant Parmigiana)
Fresh Eggplant with Chicken Cutlets, Homemade Red Sauce, Fresh Basil & Mozzarella

 

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 162

I wanted to show you the Fifty Shades of Grey chicken breasts. Look at how humongous those breasts are. Chef Jason obtained them from Tip Top Meats.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 165

Tara, my new favorite ‘I’m a mother effing food blogger’, and I commented that the next Foodventure theme here should be ‘Extra Dirty something’ (we joked that we could pair dishes with an extra filthy martini – that’s when you add more olives and olive juice to a drink in case ya didn’t know). 

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 169

It was heart warming to see Kristi and Jason work together in the kitchen.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 173

She’d dip the breasts in the egg mixture while Jason breaded the chicken with panko bread crumbs.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 177

Hot oil time

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 183

He would fry the chicken for only a few minutes as they’d cook the rest of the way in the oven with the cheese and eggplant.

HOME MADE RED SAUCE
HOME MADE RED SAUCE

He showed us how to make this red sauce from scratch. We even taste tested it several times to check for acidity and sweetness (see the plastic spoons in the back).

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 203

This is the fried eggplant on top of the mozzarella cheese and homemade red sauce.

085

Topped with more sauce and more cheese.

082

The final product was FANTASTIC. Maybe I don’t eat eggplant chicken parm often but this was THE BEST version I’ve ever had. The chicken breast tasted succulent, moist, tender and so incredibly flavorful smothered with the homemade red sauce we made earlier. Was it the panko crust (vs standard Italian breadcrumbs) that made this dish work for me. Or was it the flash frying then finishing it in oven trick that made the chicken so moist? I don’t know but all I DO know is that this was an exceptional eggplant chicken parm dish.

Third Course:

Watermelon Salad with Arugula and Goat Cheese

Farm-fresh Watermelon with Goat Cheese & Arugula tossed in Fresh Blood Orange Olive Oil and drizzled with a Vanilla-Fig Balsamic Vinegar Reduction
FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 211
Chef froze the goat cheese prior to making this salad. The frozen goat cheese crumbled like beautiful white chocolate when he used a sharp knife to sheer the frozen cheese.
FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 213
He then drizzled reduced vinegar on top of the watermelon salad. I don’t eat goat cheese so Kelsey helped serve me a bit of the salad without the cheese. You could so taste the blood orange olive oil and the sweet reduced vanilla fig vinegar added a wonderful sweetness to this salad.
Fourth Course:
 
Roasted Heirloom Carrots with Local Honey and Fresh Thyme
Farmer’s Market Heirloom Carrots roasted to perfection with Fresh Thyme and Local Honey
ROASTED HONEY CARROTS
ROASTED HONEY CARROTS

Fifth Course:

Baked Apple Rosettes with Homemade Madagascar Bourbon Vanilla Ice Cream
FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 219
PUFF PASTRY SHEETS
CORING THE GRANNY SMITH APPLES
CORING THE GRANNY SMITH APPLES

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 221

Chef Jason showed us how to roll the slices of apples into a rose shaped pastry dessert dish.

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 225

FARMER'S MARKET FOODVENTURE 248

These were so pretty

087

The puff pastry could have used a few more minutes in the oven but it was past 6:30p and a few bloggers had to leave. This dessert is so easy to make and the homemade ice cream was a nice addition to the puff pastry apple pie (this was Tara’s plate up above).

I had a fun evening that night. I’ve always wanted this blog to focus on how food brings people together and I can say that Farmer’s Market Foodventure was a fun take on that focus. It’s not often you connect quickly with new friends but this foodventure had me hugging  a few people at the end. Their next foodventure will take place October 25 and celebrate Oktoberfest with craft beer tastings at Culture Brewing Company. I’m kicking myself because the menu includes homemade pretzel twists (damn), beer steamed oysters (double damn), chicken bratwurst, cheddar beer soup (oh man damn). I think that menu would appeal to quite a few dudes you might know in your lives. OH! And they have cable tv in the cottage!

Sunday NFL + cooking = Bliss (if the dang Chargers had won again the dang Packers that day)

Thank you Kristi and Jason for a memorable day –

FARMER’S MARKET FOODVENTURE (COOK WITH JASON)
714.833.0066

Disclaimer: I was invited to try out Farmer’s Market Foodventure. All opinions stated here are my own. 

14 thoughts on “Farmer’s Market Foodventure (Cook with Jason)

    1. The weather started to cool towards early evening so that was great. It was a lot of fun to spend 1/2 the day in Solana Beach. There were only 10 people there that day so the kitchen & learning area wasn’t too packed. I’m not sure the max amount of people per class though.

  1. This looks awesome, I liked every single food thing you posted 😀

    And I’ve been to the Temecula OIive Oil company before, I think I got their white balsamic and blood orange olive oil! I was so sad that when you sample the olive oils and vinegars there is no bread :/ But taking shots of olive oil was better than I expected.

    P.S. How are your nails long but so perfect. Do you inject calcium into your eyeballs / tell me your secret.

    1. Oh I wish you were at this event. We would have a blast at the market together (second date to one!).

      Taking shot after shot of olive oil gets heavy. I secretly wanted bread but understood that it probably does mask the true olive essence they are trying to get us to taste. I would like to get the habanero olive oil and use it on a ‘special’ salad I’d prepare for you.

      My nails are somewhat decent this time around b/c I had events to go to AND I secretly wanted to give you a perfectly manicured middle finger for nail shaming me (and complimenting me) all these years 🙂

  2. Mmmm, pumpkin muffins. Streusel just makes it yummier! I like those kooky paper cups for them – I’ve seen them lots of times but have never personally used them. They sure make the muffins look prettier though.

    Huh, I have never seen yellow eggplant before. They almost look like squash instead. Also: I wants all the mushrooms.

    Aww, your own bottled wine. How cute!

    The apple rose dessert looks so prettttttty! What a nice touch! This looks like it was a really fun little foodieventure!

    1. Oh man Mary these pumpkin muffins were so dang good. I’ve never used those paper holders either. I don’t bake often but I really want to make these particular muffins toon. And you’re right – all hail the Streusel.

      The yellow eggplant unfortunately wasn’t ripe so we weren’t able to use them that evening for the parm (thank goodness Chef Jason had another eggplant variety to use). But yes, bring us the mushrooms. Mushrooms and streusel. Just not together in a muffin.

      I will serve you a shot of the sauvignon blanc juice from my very own Fayes Fork wine bottle. It’ll be special.

      This was a fun foodventure that I’d do again. I think the Oktoberfest one looks awesome but I have another engagement that day 🙁

  3. we walked through a farmers market while traveling this weekend and i thought of lucky you wandering around on this tour! great experience recap as expected. wish i were in town for that trip but you totally have it covered! i so want that eggplant chicken parm item. i wonder where to get something like that in SD.

    work is bananas! i gotta find time to meet up with ya before the end of the year. it’s been too long… 🙁

    1. You would have enjoyed this event Lynn. Chef Jason and Kristi were so personable and passionate about their work. I’m obsessed with Farmers Markets this year so this foodventure was perfect timing for me.

      The eggplant chicken parm was so good. I swear it must be the quality of the meat, the panko breading, deep frying, baking, sauce, cheese. Ha – basically the entire recipe right.

      I hope you get some much needed rest and we all reconnect in person soon 🙂

      1. We’re so happy you joined us. Lynn, we hope you can attend a future Foodventure! Keep cooking. PS. Tulip papers for the muffins can be found at Sur La Table.

Leave a Reply